Tatchell slams police and Home Office over homophobic performer Bounty Killer
Gay rights activist Peter Tatchell has said that the Metropolitan police would cancel a concert in London by a reggae artist notorious for his homophobic lyrics if there was a riot, but they ignore “polite, peaceful lobbying.”
Mr Tatchell said that Bounty Killer has been granted a visa by the Home Office to perform in the UK, despite the fact that inciting murder is a serious criminal offence.
The veretan campaigner said that he would not be organising a protest at the concert in Stratford on Sunday as it would be too dangerous.
“The Metropolitan police would only cancel the concert if there is a likelihood of public disorder – in other words they will only halt the concert if we riot.
“They are fully intent on ignoring polite peaceful lobbying – the Met will only respond to threats of violence.”
Mr Tatchell, who is a parliamentary candidate for the Green party, is furious that Bounty Killer has been given permission to perform by the Home Office.
“Police officers are beng sacked for being members of the BNP, yet this guy incites murder and they do nothing.
“The Home Secretary has many times refused visas to people who have racist views – it just shows what scum we are in their eyes.
“Bounty Killer was banned from Guyana earlier this year, but the British government says he is welcome to sing in the UK.
“A white racist singer who advocated the killing of black people would be refused entry to Britain. Why the double standards?
“This singer encourages and glorifies gang violence – it is reckless and obscene for the Home Secretary to give Bounty Killer a visa and work permit.”
The Met said in a statement:
“Since being advised of this event by both the venue and promoters we have been working closely with all parties concerned to ensure this event passes off safely.
“As part of our planning we have liased closely with members of the MPS Pan London LGBT Advisory Group and Local LGBT Advisors to ensure that local police management and responses to this event provide reassurance to the LGBT community.
“Bounty Killer has performed at The Stratford Rex a number of times in the past without incident.
“All parties concerned are fully aware of the expectations of them when performing in Newham.
“Should any incidents/allegations be reported then these will be investigated and where offences are identified we will work closely with the CPS to pursue a criminal prosecution.”
It is the second time the Met have been accused of double standards for allowing a concert by Bounty Killer.
At his Easter Sunday concert in Stratford earlier this year he did not perform any of his songs that call for gay people to be killed.
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The Jamaican reggae and dancehall DJ, born Rodney Price, had two concerts cancelled in Bradford and Birmingham in March following protests by the gay human rights group OutRage!
The Met have previously stated that artists would not be allowed to perform unless they sign the Reggae Compassionate Act (RCA), which prohibits the performance of any music that encourages or glorifies any form of violence.
Price, who was brought up in Kingston, Jamaica, became a household name in Jamaica in the early 90s, and later became known in the USA and Europe after collaborating with the Fugees, Wyclef Jean and No Doubt.
In 2003, he cancelled two of his concerts in the UK, fearing he would be arrested for the homophobic content of his songs.
Price’s lyrics include the lines “You know we need no promo to rub out dem homo” and “Mi ready fi go wipe out this fag”, which encourage the murder of homosexuals.
It is understood that he has given an undertaking not to perform any of his homophobic songs on Sunday.